N.S. working to recognize independence of adults with intellectual deficits

Nova Scotia is moving to give people with intellectual disabilities more autonomy.

Justice Minister Mark Furey said that the proposed Adult Capacity and Decision Making Act would recognize a person’s right to live their own life and make their own decisions, except in instances where that isn’t possible because of a court-proven impairment of capacity.

Mark Furrey said, “The Act itself will allow someone to apply to the court to represent another adult in making decisions in one or more areas where the adult has been shown not to have capacity. The proposed act makes clear that any action taken or decision made for the adult should be taken in the least restrictive and the least intrusive manner possible.”

The experts would asses the adult’s capacity to make decisions and the court would determine whether the person applying to be a representative is suitable.The act also includes a fine of not more than $10,000 to a representative for an adult who wilfully causes mental or physical harm to the adult in care.

The province said it consulted with more than 275 individuals and organizations over the period covering November 2016 and August to September of this year.

The new legislation must take effect on Dec. 28 as ordered by the court.


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